Joan C. Ryan's bileful letter "Church views change with society" (The Courier, April 17) is reminiscent of the attacks on the early Christian church which endured such misrepresentations as being "cannibals" (eating and drinking the body and blood of Jesus Christ).
She is unable to differentiate between the actions of sinful men (including those of the disgraceful Alexander Borgia) and the high office which he possessed; but this is the very condition of every person who, at some point in their lives, do reprehensible things and at other times, good things.
If you reject the Papal system because of Alexander, you must logically reject the College of the Apostles because of Judas the traitor.
Popes, like all other men, have to work out their own salvation.
To be elected as a Pope is not to get a through-ticket to heaven, but only to have one's responsibilities before God immeasurably increased.
To demonstrate her erroneous thinking: she says: "Indulgence in sexual misconduct" (by popes) ... "has persisted to the present."
Is she able to present any evidence as to the sexual misconduct of Benedict XVI, or John Paul II, or Pius XII, etc. ?
She evidences the "meat on Friday" matter.
Obviously she is unaware of the differences between the commandments of God (which are non-negotiable) and the commandments of the church which are disciplinary, and changeable.
Same-sex marriage is one of the non-negotiable notions, as well as any sexual abuse.
Joan C. Ryan's notion that the church must conform with the norms of society is farcical when one reads of the moral breakdown of Australian society evidenced by abortions of healthy babies, widespread births to single mothers (very many of them being themselves children), abuse of mothers and babies by live-in "lovers" or "step-fathers", unrestrained drug and alcohol abuse, motor-vehicle theft and "hooning" need I go on?
F. JOHN LOUGHNAN